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The Runaway Hug (2011)

by Nick Bland

Other authors: Freya Blackwood (Illustrator)

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1207203,767 (4.41)None
Lucy shares the hug with everyone in her family. Along the way it becomes softer, sleepier, bigger, even peanut-buttery. But when the hug runs away, Lucy discovers that it is not so easy to get it back.
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Showing 1-5 of 7 (next | show all)
Sweet book, really excellent illustrations. Awwwww.... ( )
  jennybeast | Apr 14, 2022 |
When Lucy asks her mother for a hug in this sweet Australian picture-book, only to be told it is the last one, she is very careful to conserve it. She shares the hug with a variety of family members, always asking for it back. But when she hugs her dog Annie, and Annie runs off, it seems as if the hug is lost. Fortunately, Annie returns, with a hug (and kiss) far more slobbery than the one she was given...

The Runaway Hug is my first book from author Nick Bland, but definitely not my first from illustrator Freya Blackwood. Blackwood is, in fact, one of my favorite contemporary picture-book illustrators, and I sought this book out largely because I enjoy her work so much. I was not disappointed on that score, finding the illustrations here charming. The chaos of a busy family home is captured in all of the little details, while the love of the family that lives there is adeptly depicted in the faces, gestures and body language of the characters, whether human or dog. The story, in which a series of hugs is given, reminded me a bit of James Mayhew and Sue Hellard's Where's My Hug?, in which a boy is embarrassed to get a hug in public from his mother, only to be dismayed later, when he asks for it, and is told that is has been given away. The complexity of hugging certainly seems to be a topic that picture-book creators enjoy, to judge by these and other titles. Recommended to picture-book readers looking for fun, warmhearted family tales, as well as to fellow fans of Freya Blackwood's lovely illustrations. ( )
  AbigailAdams26 | Mar 9, 2021 |
A beautiful story about a mom's hug that comes full circle and ends with a goodnight kiss. ( )
  True54Blue | Oct 23, 2018 |
I had mixed feelings about this book after reading it. I liked the language style of the book because there was a pattern of specific events that kept happening throughout the story. Lucy is a young girl preparing to go to bed, but first she has to hug everyone in the household to redeem a hug originally given by her mother. The book follows all of Lucy's steps to achieve this goal. This was the overall focus of the entire story. The big idea/message of the story would be family/motherly affection. I didn't like how the book pushes readers to treat hugs like bills or loans you have to pay back. Lucy hugged her mother and had to keep hugging the rest of the household so she could give her mothers original hug back to her. Also, the illustrations did not enhance the story at all. They instead put a dull mood over the whole story because of the dark, neutral colors. ( )
  AndreaStreet | Sep 6, 2016 |
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Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Bland, Nickprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Blackwood, FreyaIllustratorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
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'Mummy,' said Lucy, 'can I have a hug before I go to bed?'
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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Lucy shares the hug with everyone in her family. Along the way it becomes softer, sleepier, bigger, even peanut-buttery. But when the hug runs away, Lucy discovers that it is not so easy to get it back.

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